Associate Professor Sarah Szanton was named a Health Care Innovator by the Baltimore Business Journal for her Community Aging in Place—Advancing Better Living for Elders (CAPABLE) program that helps older adults maintain independence at home.
“CAPABLE shows innovation because of its modern, yet common-sense, approach to care,” says Szanton, who strives to meet both the medical and mobility goals of patients by focusing on housing and its impact on important aspects of healthcare.
Preliminary results of the program showed that older adults who received care visits from a nurse and occupational therapist and had minor adjustments made to their homes experienced improved function and decreased disability. CAPABLE was recognized by BBJ as a program that could have the potential to reduce nursing home admissions and save on healthcare dollars nationally. It often costs as little as $3,000 in comparison to most nursing homes, which can cost $70,000 a year or more. Szanton says this kind of functional care is an important investment for an ever-growing population of elderly Americans. “We’re at a tremendous moment in history to improve lives and save taxpayer dollars at the same time,” she says.